Should I Have Kids If I have OCD & Anxiety
In this episode, I discuss the idea of having children if you struggle with OCD & Anxiety. This topic is particularly relevant for me as my wife recently gave birth to our first daughter. It is common for people with OCD & Anxiety to wrestle with the idea of having children. They will often doubt their capabilities or even go as far as to question the morality of having children because they struggle with mental illness. So in this episode, I share my personal thoughts on the issue and offer some practical considerations for people who are struggling with this question. Enjoy!
00:08 All right. Hey there and welcome to another episode of the restored mind show where we're going to talk about having kids, um, and when specifically when it comes to recovery from OCD and anxiety. And so, um, you know, on this, on this episode, what I wanted to talk about is the idea of having children. And the reason I wanted to do that is because, um, my wife just gave birth to our first, uh, first child, um, a week ago. And so, um, which is why I didn't have a episode last week and, um, because, you know, obviously we were a little busy and so, um, you know, we are, we're all at home and I'm happy to report everyone's safe and healthy and, um, you know, it's one of those things where I, I thought on this intrusive thought, um, series, one of the things that con, uh, constantly comes up in, in, you know, treatment and working with people and, and one of the things that I thought on my own recovery process is like, Hey, you know, should I have kids?
01:00 Right? Is that fair? Right. And what, what, what happens a lot of times is, um, OCD and anxiety loves to latch onto that idea and it will start, you know, it's just like another Lewer that it throws out to try to catch you, right? So people will talk about feeling inferior, right? On that idea of like, Oh, well, you know, I don't know if I'm, I don't know if I'm able to do it right. I don't know if I have the capability and, and you'll doubt your capabilities of having children or, um, even the thought of if it's morally correct, right? You know, what is it even is morally or ethically right, for me to have kids. And so what I wanted to do in this episode is talk about that because, um, you know, when you're in that lens of OCD and anxiety, it will always, it will always try to take from you.
01:45 It will always try to control and, um, and, and that's really kind of what it does, right? It really, it wants to control as much of your life as possible. Right? So, and, and that's really kind of the key, key point I want to, I want to say in this video is that when, when OCD is run in the show or anxiety's running the show, it will try to control and take from you and it will try to limit your life in any way it can. And it thinks again that it, you know, that that part of your brain thinks it's trying to help you by trying to control. But what, what happens is, is when you play it safe, you know, you, you limit possibilities in your life, right? And I can't tell you how many people I've talked to that are like, well, you know, I don't know if it's, you know, right.
02:23 For me to have kids, I don't know if I should get married, you know, because, and, and again, they, they take the issue of OCD and anxiety and, and when they're in the lens of it and they look at the idea of having kids and being married in or you know, getting in relationships, things like that, and they, they allow OCD kind of clog that or, uh, distort that, um, possibility in their life because they see it through the lens of anxiety and OCD. And what I want to say is that, look on my own recovery, like when I was, when I was really lost and stuck in OCD, the idea of having kids and getting married, you know, that was impossible to me. Right? Like again, you know, I was, um, and I know I've shared this before, but when I was really sick, you know, when I was, uh, like 19, you know, stuff like that.
03:08 I mean, I, I talked to like a therapist, you know, and they told me, they're like, well, you know, you're probably going to have to live with your parents for the rest of your life. And you know, this isn't really treatable and you know, for someone to, to set that kind of ceiling on what's possible for your life on someone else. I mean, it, it's just, um, it's, it's so crazy that people are willing to do that. And, and, you know, luckily I didn't listen and you know, I, I pursued my own recovery and, and look, I really took my life back and it's not something that, that I struggle with, um, on a day to day basis anymore. And the thing is, is that's really what I want to communicate is like this idea of having kids. You can't, or getting married or whatever you know, you want to do with your life.
03:53 You can't look at it through the lens of OCD because OCT will always try to limit that and try to protect you and try to, you know, have you play it safe or control the situation. And the reality is, when you do that, what happens is you close possibilities in your life, right? And by, and no one, no one ever looks back, you know, that I've talked to anyone on their life and they're like, you know, I'm really glad I played that one safe. You know? And it's not that like if you have kids that it's, it's guaranteeing that, you know, you won't have flare ups of anxiety or stuff like that, but Hey, you know, like that's, that's not what it's about. Right? And so if having children is something that you want to pursue or being in a relationship is something you want to pursue with your life, um, and OCD is holding you back from that.
04:35 The thing I would really encourage you is to not let OCD have a say in that. Okay, now, now I understand that, you know, having children is a, is a sensitive topic. Cause you know, some people want to have kids and they can't. And so I'm not saying that like it's just going to happen and we feel very blessed to have our baby today. Um, but it's, it's one of those things that if that is something that you're not doing because of anxiety and OCD, then I would encourage you to challenge that because it, and not, not allow OCD and anxiety to make that choice for you, you know? And, and again, really, you know, do, because again, this, this recovery process is not about how can I always be comfortable. It's about how can I grow as a person? How can I, you know, kind of evolve myself.
05:20 And that's, you know, one of the things I've just learned, um, you know, with, with recovery and treatment is like, look, you know, the more and more you grow, the more and more you look back on, like, you know, when you were stuck and just like, Oh man, you know, like, what was I thinking? Right. Um, you know, because again, had I not chose, chosen to challenge OCD, I, you know, could still be living at home, you know, and my parents or something. Right. Or, or, and, and now, you know, then going on to get married and then now have a baby. It's like, you know, I, I kinda, it's, it's amazing what you actually can experience in life when you take those steps to challenge yourself. Now is it scary? Of course, you know, there's a whole bunch of Uncer uncertainty and OCD will try to latch onto that, but if that is something that you want for your life that you haven't pursued because of, because of OCD, right?
06:14 Or because of anxiety and you're worried if it's morally or ethically correct. You know, again, I would really encourage you to kind of remove OCD and anxiety from that question, right? And, and just ask yourself, is this something that you want and in, regardless of the OCD and anxiety and then go and pursue that, um, you know, because again, like if that is something that is, is OCD anxiety is controlling and has, has a grip on in your life, then the thing is, is that you need to take that back. Because again, what recovery is about is about, it's not about controlling your life and trying to control fear and all that stuff. It's about opening as many doors as possible with your life. Right? So if you want to pursue, you know, a job or career that you really want to pursue, it's about taking that step, right.
06:58 Taking the step to go do it. And, and if you want to build a family, then it's about taking the steps to do that, um, even when you're uncertain. Right. And that's, um, that's the thing that I were just really want to talk about today is that like, look, I, there was a point in my life where I'd never thought this was possible and I used to have those same questions like, well, what if you know this and that and what if she gets OCD? Cause what if it's genetic? And it's like, you know what, there's treatment options available, right? And there's no guarantees with anything. And, um, you know, the, the, the, the main point that I really want you to take away from this is to never let OCD have a say in your life. You know, where the, whatever it is. Okay.
07:34 If that's your pursuing a relationship you want to pursue or having having kids or you know, pursuing a career, don't let OCD make the choice for you. You make the choice for you and take that, take that choice back and, and, and again, empower yourself to make those choices and don't make them based out of fear, right? Because again, that's, that's what OCD does. That loves to limit the possibilities, um, in your life. And what recovery really is about is about opening up as many possibilities as, as possible, right? And really pursuing the things that you want to pursue regardless on if it's uncertain or, you know, fears involved. It's about you making choices based on your values and what you want and building the kind of life that you want. And so, um, so I wanted to make this, this quick episode because, um, you know, obviously I just had this whole new change in my life and, um, and it's really exciting and it's awesome and it's amazing.
08:28 And you know, for those of you out there that are considering having children but aren't because you're afraid of OCD or OCD getting involved or any of that, the thing is, is I really would encourage you just to, to take the steps you know, in, in, in, and you have to take them without that, without that certainty, right? And, and again, of course you need to get help and get treatment and get the tools. But once you have the tool set and you really feel like, you know, you know what to do when shows up, you should be pursuing the things you really want to pursue in life. All right. And again, of course there's exceptions to this rule. And if you don't want children, you know, that's, it's fine. It's not a big deal. It's just this, this a episode is really about those of you that are sitting there wanting to do this, but afraid because OCD is holding onto it.
09:13 All right? And if that is the case, then I use a, again, I encourage you to take the steps because, um, and, and to pursue it any way because, uh, it's an amazing opportunity and amazing possibility that, um, that you have in life. And, um, and again, it will help kind of how it'll help you evolve to the next level once you take those steps and really challenge OCD as well. So again, hopefully this was helpful. Um, you know, and uh, just to summarize again, it's all about just really taking control of your life, right? And, and taking back your life from fear and anxiety and uncertainty and OCD. And so, um, and, and that's really the main message that I wanted to say in this episode. And so, um, if you found this helpful, and again, we have a bunch of resources for you, uh, available on our site.
09:56 Uh, I have some links below where you can click over and you can get those free resources to help you on your journey. And, um, we also please follow us, um, and subscribe to our social channels as well. We really appreciate the sport and be sure to leave comments of videos you want created or you know, questions you have. So, you know, as we create future episodes, um, you know, that, uh, you know, we, we, we can help serve you, you know, and, and ultimately, um, you know, answer questions that you have. And so, thanks so much for tuning in, um, this week and we really look forward to, uh, you know, the continuing this series on intrusive thoughts, um, as we move forward. So thanks so much and you guys have a wonderful day.